Stewards of the Soil 20x20' Giant Highway Mural
I installed my huge new free-standing mural, "Stewards of the Soil" in a field in my hometown, Dixon, CA, 20 miles from Sacramento, off Interstate 80E. I dedicated this massive public art in appreciation to farming families' lifestyle of hard work and their commitment to produce food in tough conditions year-round. I also hoped to build community awareness with artwork that Dixon could be proud of.
Phase 1: Preparing the Mural Site
Our mural team made 2 installation trips to Dixon in the summer heat. First we marked the locations and dug 5' deep holes, using a tractor and giant auger. Next we shoveled 2 yards of concrete into the Sonotube ducts and mounted rugged hardware to hold 20' beams in place. Then we waited 2 weeks for the concrete base to cure.
I'm very grateful to Che Miller, for his masterful structural design and construction. Ignacio deserves a huge thank-you for his auger expertise to dig giant holes for my mural. And I really appreciate Bodhi Miller's diligence to shovel concrete for hours, and his compassion to rescue toads during our mural preparation.
Phase 2: Building the Structure and Attaching the Mural
We spent 2 days building the mural's framework. We consulted San Luis Obispo structural engineer, Michael Kalin for direction on how to make the mural's foundation strong enough for heavy winds. I have a new-found respect for contractors who have to work in 100 degree weather.
Builder Gregory Steers and talented artist, Sally Lamas showed up on day 2 to help us. I am forever grateful to them. Otherwise we would have been sweating for another 3 days of intense heat to get the job done. On Day 3, we attached the mural to the framework. It went up fairly quickly. Many motorists honked their appreciation as they drove by!
"Stewards of the Soil" in the media
ABC10's Giacomo Luca did a heartfelt story on the mural that captured my childhood influences of growing up close to the soil, the crops and my family's farm. Watch it here: https://www.abc10.com/article/news/local/dixon-native-paints-20-foot-mural
I was fortunate enough to be interviewed by the vivacious Dina Kupfer on CBS13 for "Good Morning Sacramento." You can watch the clip here: https://gooddaysacramento.cbslocal.com/video/3904407-dixon-mural/
On our last installation day, I created a live video on Facebook about my mural inspiration and creative process. Surprisingly, it reached 120,000 views! Enjoy the background story here: https://www.facebook.com/colleen.gnos/videos